51 Comment

  • Man that bloody mary looks amazing

  • As if that’s surprising…perhaps if the Mayor had a better argument then his proposal might have had a chance. Heh

    • His argument was good, its just that there are a lot of people in this city who want to legislate public morality.

  • Jim Graham needs to go. He’ll do the same thing on Sunday sales. He cares way more about appeasing christians from Maryland than doing anything for his ward or the city at large. Even Maryland and Virginia are ahead of DC on this. It’s absurd and ought to embarrass reasonable, rational-thinking people that this revenue is off the table because some religious nuts decide when it’s ok to drink.

    • clevelanddave

      Your intolerant of people who want to sleep, don’t want to wake up to throw up and garbage on the street and sidewalks, and think that there are some hours when people just shouldn’t be drinking in public. You want a drink at 4 am? Good. Buy yourself a bottle and take it home. Then the only people who will care is your wife and your dog. And maybe your neighbors.

      • I would buy a bottle in a store, but Jim Graham doesn’t let me shop for booze on Sunday because his friends from Maryland complain it would bother their imaginary friend in the sky.

        • So buy it on Saturday. Clearly you are aware of your alchohol fondness.

          • My fondness is actually that for a separation of church and state. It is wrong that religious restrictions are the basis for liquor laws. That needs to change. The fact that lifting the Sunday prohibition wasn’t even on the table shows our council members are not serious people interested in actually solving problems. This isn’t about me. I don’t need a drink at 4 AM or necessarily on a Sunday. But I shouldn’t be prohibited from doing so because it offends someone else’s religion.

          • Stop being obtuse. This isn’t about alcohol, as Anon 2:37 pointed out.

    • You have absolutely no basis for the statement that Graham is “appeasing christians from Maryland.” There are very good reasons for not extending bar hours, and many of his constituents opposed it.

      I don’t know where you live, but I’m in Columbia Heights, which was a total hell hole 10 years ago. No one has more to do with the positive transformation that Jim Graham. He was tireless in twisting the arms of developers and bureaucrats to get the 14th street redevelopment moving. Once that happened, everything else followed. Jim Graham keeps winning reelection by a landslide for a reason.

  • clevelanddave

    Good. I’m sure it will come back though. 2 to 3 isn’t resounding so I’m sure they’ll tweak it and try again, unfortunately.

    • Graham was the swing vote and he’s already said he’ll do what church-goers tell him instead of common sense. Don’t expect it any time soon.

  • PoP, you missed a critical piece of the debate here. Not only did they decline to extend the hours, but they also propose to add a 6 cent per drink tax increase.

    From the WaPo:

    “The council now faces a $3.2 million hole in the fiscal year 2013 budget. To make up the gap, Graham, Wells, Brown and Barry are recommending a 6-cent per drink increase in the city’s alcohol excise tax.”

    • Nicely noted.

      Question: is all alcohol taxed the same or are different types taxed (not taxed) at different levels? I ask b/c I wonder if certain socio-economic groups are targeted with the excise tax (current and/or proposed rate).

      • ah

        Looks like they’re hitting my fondness for Champagne and higher alcohol Pinot Noirs. Bastards–hit up the bottles of malt liquor with a surtax.

        Beer = $2.79 per barrel
        Champagne/sparkling wine = $0.45 per gallon
        Distilled Spirits = $1.50 per gallon
        Light wine (alcohol content 14% or less) = $0.30 per gallon
        Heavy wine (alcohol content above 14%) = $0.40 per gallon


  • This council is an embarrassment. Graham has always been, but seems to be getting even worse. I don’t think this is the end of this, though. This was only in Graham’s fiefdom/committee, not the Council at large.

  • There is something wrong when you are out drinking until 4am. Sunday sales seems like a no brainer on the other hand.

    Wash DC is not a big city like NYC running 24/7, nor should / will it ever be, thank goodness.

    If you need to drink that late, maybe there is another more pressing issue you need to deal with.

    And I hardly think Councilman Grahan is appeasing Christians from MD and/or VA.

    Jim Graham has been devoted to this city for decades.

    • “There is something wrong when you are out drinking until 4am.”


      “Sunday sales seems like a no brainer on the other hand.”

      Okay, true. But why, then, not the former?

      “Wash DC is not a big city like NYC running 24/7, nor should / will it ever be, thank goodness.”

      The world works 24/7, why not DC?

      “If you need to drink that late, maybe there is another more pressing issue you need to deal with.”

      Or, you know, you work in the service industry and just got out of work. Or, you live a different schedule than YOU do.

      “And I hardly think Councilman Grahan is appeasing Christians from MD and/or VA.”

      This I have no idea. I’m not in Graham’s head.

      “Jim Graham has been devoted to this city for decades.”

      So is everybody else who disagrees with you.

    • Have you ever had a rough day at work and wanted to kick back and have a few beers? Me too. Except I work in the industry so my bad days end around 2am. Stop being so judgemental about late night drinking. Chances are, a lot of the people who’d take advantage of the extended hours don’t start their workday at 8am. Hotels and restaurants are the second largest industry in this city and we’d like to enjoy a drink when we finish our ten hour shifts too!!

  • I would like to see Sunday sales, but I think the bars are open late enough.

    • T

      +1 I’d like to see Sunday sales of cases of beer only (no singles), bottles of wine, and bottles of liquor 750ml or larger.

      • You can already buy beer and wine on Sundays. The only thing you can’t buy is liquor.

    • On what basis are you coming to that conclusion?

      If for your own personal life the current closing hours meet your demands, then I certainly understand, but there may be many others who wish to have a drink later than you. Isn’t that there personal choice?

  • The drink in that picture should be a “What the Helen of Troy is This?”

  • The people bitching about Sunday sales and bar hours are the same ones that bitch about noise in the city..Move to the fucking suburbs where you belong.Bitch about the height of your neighbors grass and color of his house and get the fuck out of my city.

    • Yes, yes, cities are only for self-absorbed 20-something drunks yelling “whoo hooo” at 4 am. Powerful argument there. And artfully put too.

    • Great point Jamie! The best part was that you apparently thought up the gist of it at 4 am while drunk. How clever!

    • See, it’s this exact attitude that makes me not support extended alcohol hours. If “your city” weren’t filled with massively self-absorbed, self-entitled jerks I’d be less worried about keeping the bars open.

      Now cut your grass before I call 311. They’ll fine you for that.

    • Huh? PoP, my post about a whining artist is deleted, but this post from Jamie remains. Not following the logic.

      • +1

        There seems to be so much hostility or vitriol (as people on this blog like to say) in Jamie’s post…what happened to PoP’s Operation Restore Civility?

    • Thanks for providing a perfect definition of shooting yourself in the foot.

  • How come they just dont extend the hours of store sales. 10pm seems silly esp. since you can buy in in VA and MD past those hours. That would increase tax rev wouldnt it?

    • this!! the reason they don’t do it is to force people to spend $7 a beer on U Street. Folks that are street drinking are buying the harder stuff earlier, anyway.
      How many times have you wanted to leave the bar to go to a friend’s house, where the music is better and there are fewer d-bags, only to remember that you can’t buy beer after ten. Plan earlier, they say. Ok, so buy a six pack, take it home, go to a bar, go back home, retrieve alcohol, go back out…
      I want to have the freedom to do what i want! I thought this was ‘Murica!!

  • Frankly, I’d rather my roommate be OUT drinking and getting belligerent than have him drinking and belligerent in the house…just a thought.

    • ah

      The rest of the world would like your roommate in your house being belligerent rather than out and about.

  • As my mom and dad would always say…Nothing good ever happens after 2 am. Lets see if this holds true with the proposal.

  • For once, good sense prevails. I’m happy.

  • The assumption that many are making regarding Sunday sales is that it is the forces of religion that are solely at play here. Keep in mind that bars and restaurants in DC do very well on Sundays because of these laws. If the cupboard is bare and you want a sip on Sunday, you have to go to a watering hole for one. Is it the churches who are most influential in preserving this situation, or the bars? They contribute to political campaigns too, you know.


    • The opposition to this measure was largely rooted in those wanting to impose their moral sense on everyone else. The zealots were more energized and vocal. Their councilmen responded. However, the majority of the city that doesn’t oppose drinking alcohol or have a strong desire to impose their moral views everyone else was quiet. So, here we are, facing a budget crisis with no solutions and more restrictions and gambling and drinking that deny the city revenue.

  • What? Religion? Separation of Church and State? None of that is in play here. But its brilliant to try to peg the opposition as “outsiders” and “zealots” and “not like us”.

    The plain fact is that its actually quite the opposite these changes are being pushed by corporate interests, corner store owners, and bar owners who care nothing but about how they can sell more booze.

    On the sunday sales change:
    You know the corner store that you dont like down the street from you? Its messy, has stale shit for sale, and is the local hang out for the drunks? THE OWNER IS THE ONE WHO WILL BENEFIT.

    Churches arent railing against the change, people who hate drunks pissing on their lawn 6 days a week and dont want it going to 7 days a week are.

    As for the bar hour changes, there are very real concerns from people who live in close proximity to bars. Tons of approvals were made on the basis that the max closing possible was at a specific time. Now the max is changing, but all of the bars are still there.

    I personally dont care when bars are open, but then again, I dont live on the 1400 block of T Street or just off 18th Street.

    The system we have works. If you feel like you dont have enough access to alcohol, maybe you just need to plan ahead better. If you’re completely incapable of planning ahead adequately, odds are you have an alcohol problem and could use a day to dry out.

  • He’s not regulating my behavior because I have no desire to drink in bars past 2:00 am. He’s regulating your behavior, which is what I suspect most people in Ward 1 want. That’s called democracy.

    • No, I think if you were to ask resident of Ward 1 if they want the government to regulate their personal behavior they would say no.

  • I love to party as much as the next guy, BUT I’m glad that I have one free day that the urine smell subsides and I don’t have weave through the local drunks outside the liquor store. If I really want to drink on Sunday, I buy my alcohol on Saturday.

  • I think most telling was that most of my friends in the service industry (including some who own/manage bars) were greatly opposed to extending hours. They noted, as many have here, that no positive business is happening at 3am anyway. Seems like if anyone would have the right perspective, it’d be the people working in the bars.

  • Mmmm… bloody mary. Ok first, I have lived in Jim Graham’s ward for 15 years and he is always very responsive. However (you know there had to be a however) I don’t understand the problem with Sunday liquor sales.

    I love DC and understand that I will pay one of the highest “state” tax rates in the nation for the priviledge, not to mention dealing with the parking Nazis.

    But there comes a point where the council needs to stop closing the budget gap by raising taxes and fees. Everyone has a breaking point where Arlington starts to look more appealing…just sayin’

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